The calendar says it's summer, but it's raining here in Nova Scotia. Combining wishful thinking and a touch of gloating, I looked for something to cheer me up to write about, and chose sunburn. Whether or not you believe me when I say, "I feel your pain" is up to you!
It's easy to relish the warmth and the golden tan from spending time in the sun, but it's tempting to overdo it and get burnt. Here are some suggestions for soothing herbal sunburn relief:
Tea Tree Oil diluted to one part with ten parts of olive oil or coconut oil and spread freely over the affected areas is soothing and pain-relieving and also reduces blistering and peeling. You can also applied tea tree oil full strength to sunburn.
Personally, I find it even more soothing to combine tea tree oil with another cooling herbal, my personal favorite is aloe. I grow aloe plants and I pick and split a leaf, squeeze out the gelatinous substance, add a few drops of tea tree oil, and pat gently on the burned area. Then blowing on it or sitting in front of a fan increases the cooling sensation.
Tea tree is especially effective when paired with lavender oil. Add five drops of tea tree and 11 drops of lavender oil to three ounces of cool, distilled water. Place this mixture in a bottle with a spray atomizer attachment and mist sunburned areas whenever cooling relief is needed. Molly of Molly's Herbals sells a tea tree/lavender oil mixture that makes this remedy really easy.
Add a few drops of tea tree oil to vitamin E or aloe Vera lotion. Apply a few times a day to relieve pain, redness and inflammation.
People with sensitive skin should use tea tree oil in diluted form. It can be mixed with another oil such as almond or wheat germ. Apply cold water to remove heat and then gently rub oil mixture into affected areas to help relieve stinging and later itching.
I found some wonderful after-sun skin care products that contain many of these ingredients just by searching the web, I suggest you do the same if you would rather not make your own remedies.